Sedating histamine

Symptomatic measures, such as increasing fluids, making sure children get enough rest and reducing the spread of the virus (including regular hand washing) should be practiced.

For children requiring antihistamines for allergies, a non-sedating antihistamine such as loratadine or cetirizine is preferred.

Sedating antihistamines cause drowsiness and may therefore affect your ability to drive or operate machinery safely.

This should not be a problem if you take them before going to bed, but be aware of your potentially reduced ability if you are going to perform any hazardous tasks.

Antihistamines are also available as creams, but these too are ineffective at reducing the itchiness of eczema and can cause allergic reactions in the skin.

Antihistamines may cause side effects that could worsen conditions, such as glaucoma, enlarged prostate gland, retention of urine, or obstruction of the gut, and for this reason they should be used with caution in these conditions.

Many people find the worst symptom of their eczema is severe itching.

Scratching relieves the itch, but also makes the inflammation and the itching worse because it causes more inflammatory substances to be released within the skin.

H1-antihistamines have been used for more than fifty years in treating various allergic manifestations. H1-antihistamines which penetrate into brain elicit, by inhibiting stimulant effect of histamine, drowsiness.

This reminder follows a report received by the Centre for Adverse Reactions Monitoring (CARM) concerning a three-year-old child who was given chlorphenamine for a lower respiratory tract infection and experienced a serious neurological disorder.

Fortunately, the child eventually recovered without any on-going ill-effects.

There are two different types of antihistamine – the older group, sedating antihistamines, can enter the brain and cause drowsiness, while the newer non-sedating antihistamines do not.

Itching can occur during the day but is usually worse in early evening and at night, so sedating antihistamines are used because they help make you sleepy, as well as reducing the itch.

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In these conditions they work by preventing the actions of histamine, which is a substance produced by the body as part of its natural defences.

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